It may be a wonderful world, but as Dan Riskin explains, it's also a dangerous, disturbing, and disgusting one. At every turn, it seems, living things are trying to eat us, poison us, use our bodies as their homes, or have us spread their eggs. In Mother Nature Is Trying to Kill You, Riskin is our guide through the natural world at its most gloriously ruthless. Using the seven deadly sins as a road map, Riskin offers dozens of jaw-dropping examples that illuminate how brutal nature can truly be. From slothful worms that hide in your body for up to 30 years to wrathful snails with poisonous harpoons that can kill you in less than five minutes to lustful ducks that have orgasms faster than you can blink, these fascinating accounts reveal the candid truth about "gentle" Mother Nature's true colors. Riskin's passion for the strange and his enthusiastic expertise bring Earth's most fascinating flora and fauna into vivid focus. Through his adventures - which include sliding on his back through a thick soup of bat guano just to get face-to-face with a vampire bat, befriending a parasitic maggot that has taken root on his head, and coming to grips with having offspring of his own - Riskin makes unexpected discoveries not just about the world all around us but also about the ways this brutal world has shaped us as humans and what our responsibilities are to this terrible, wonderful planet we call home.
©2014 Dan Riskin (P)2014 Tantor
"A fact-filled and amusing trek through nature's dark side that adroitly combines learning and the yuck factor." (Kirkus Reviews)
Mother and catlover
This is a great book –
It fills in the picture of "All Natural", the catchphrase that retailers use to encourage certain kinds of purchases. It's underlying theme is that the phrase "all-natural" is not synonymous with "good for you". "Natural" may actually be good for something, but that something is not necessarily human!
Survival of the fittest encourages "nature" to adapt to all – and I do mean ALL – organisms, not just humans. I personally was always suspicious of the phrase "all-natural" because I could always use deadly nightshade as an example of something "all-natural" that I was NOT interested in having in my breakfast! This book expands on that.
Mr. Riskin makes a humorous and somewhat touching essay about nature in general and what ALL organisms are doing – and how they're adapting – to survive and grow their species. Most of it has nothing to do with keeping humans healthy. The book has the added plus of answering the question "is my love of my son solely because of DNA?"
The book is well thought out and comprehensive. It's an excellent choice!
Misleading title because this book has nothing to do with mother nature trying to kill you. It's about how the 7 deadly sins relate to the plant and animal kingdoms. Not bad but not what I was expecting. Meh
Inostrancevia - the uber Gorgonopsian.
Yes. A wide variety of animals and plants are featured in this audiobook. Also, it was an easy, informative listen throughout. This is a perfect audio listen for that long drive.
As far as animal species are characters, I guess the parasite whose larvae gives you Elephantiasis can't really be called my favorite character, that would be a smidge morbid. But it takes the "wow that's interesting" prize. The author described in some detail its life cycle and how after decades things really go south for people who have the tiitanic misfortune of suffering this debilitating and disfiguring malady. There are scores of other nasty, opportunistic and ingenious little buggers squiggling around just waiting for you to take that quick dip in the pond over there, or even clean out your cat's litter box - you will be shocked, then worried and ultimately resigned to the fact that your cat has exposed you to............. buy the audiobook and discover for yourself. And don't kid yourself, the cat knew all along.
An easy to listen to voice from the author himself. He has some endearing anecdotes of his family sprinkled throughout the book and you can tell he really digs his wife and loves his son with all of his heart. I was impressed with his narration skills.
I don't know if I planned to listen to this book in one go, but I listened to it straight through while I was fishing at a local lake. Caught 4 largemouth bass, tossed a couple rocks at some pesky crows, climbed up a rock outcrop and stared at a beautiful Osprey that was sitting on a tree branch screeching away for a hour all while listening to the author describe the 1001 ways nature is truly "red in tooth and claw".
Tons of info about hordes of different animals from the microscopic to the largest animal in the history of animals. Learning can be fun, and this audiobook proves it!
Seven Deadly Sins
It's in a class of its own
I thoroughly enjoyed the book but my favorite part would be When Dan Riskin shares his bot fly incident.
If I had the time.
I enjoyed reading the book, now I can have the author himself(Dan Riskin) Narrrated and enjoy it even more
Report Inappropriate Content